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Sit Down Restaurants Northern California


Emil Villa's California Barbecue
Hayward, CA
Photo and info courtesy Dave & Debra van Hulsteyn

Here's the 'world famous' Emil Villa's. This sign is more impressive at night, especially since it's about 50 feet high. The real treasure here, though, is a neon pig 'sequence' sign. The pig runs along a wall and dives into a pie.


UPDATE 04/05 : Emil Villa's in Hayward is still going strong. The ribs are the best in the country! They smoke 'em in a wood fired oven. You might jump when they whack the ribs apart with a cleaver. Whack! Many thanks to John from Carson City for update. 04-05



Fisherman's Grotto #9
San Francisco, CA
Photo courtesy Matt Walsh

Fisherman's Grotto #9 has been a San Francisco landmark location since 1935 at its bayside location in Fisherman's Wharf. Here is a close-up of the fisherman logo character that is depicted on the large rooftop sign. The grotto is usually quite busy, as is most of the restaurants along the wharf, especially during the tourist season in the summertime.



Lakeshore Fountain Restaurant
Oakland, CA
Photo courtesy Devil Doll

This fine marquee for the Lakeshore Fountain Restaurant still graces the building in Oakland.



The Fireside (Demolished)
Sacramento, CA
Photo courtesy Dave & Debra van Hulsteyn

The Fireside in Sacramento still features its chicken and steak as well as it eye catching marquee out in the parking lot.



Ernie's Seafood
San Leandro, CA
Photo by RoadsidePeek.com

This sign sits atop the roof at Ernie's Seafood restaurant in San Leandro. The paint on this sign is well kept... so much that you half expect this tug boat to go sailing off before your eyes.




Lou LaBonte's (Closed)
Auburn, CA
Photo courtesy Dave & Debra van Hulsteyn

Traveling back from Reno and/or Truckee, you'll whiz by several roadside signs. One that stands out is Lou LaBonte's in Auburn. Lou LaBonte's is a good place to grab a good meal of surf and turf. The business has been around since 1946.

(Far left) Close up of the neon chef

(Near left) The Lou LaBonte's Restaurant in Auburn


UPDATE 11/17 : The former Lou Labonte's Restaurant closed down in November 2014 after 68 years. Owner and proprietor Judi La Bonte retired and decided to move to Georgia. The place is now the site of a business called Awful Annie's which moved from old town and the sign has been redone. 11-17










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